ROCKLAND, Maine — A four-unit house that sits on property that had been proposed for use as a parking lot for a controversial five-story hotel was torn down on Wednesday.
The property owner has yet to announce any new potential uses for the lot at 49 Pleasant St.
Last July, ADZ Partnership paid $25,000 to buy the three-tenths of an acre lot with the 1,900-square-foot house which had been built in 1880. ADZ had sought a zone change from the city to allow the company to use the property as a valet parking lot for people who would stay at the proposed five-story boutique hotel to be located nearby at 250 Main St.
Considerable opposition from neighbors to the proposed zone change prompted the developer to instead work out an agreement with the Maine Department of Transportation to lease some space from the state off Park Street next to Midcoast Mental Health Center’s parking lot.
A public hearing on the proposed hotel will be held before the Rockland Planning Board beginning at 5:15 p.m.Tuesday, May 20, at Rockland City Hall.
A group of neighbors still opposes the project, saying the tall building is out of character with the residential area it abuts. As proposed, the hotel would be 56 feet tall but its elevator shafts would rise to 64 feet. City zoning in that downtown area allows for buildings to be up to 65 feet tall. A nearby hotel is 55 feet tall.
At Monday night’s Rockland City Council meeting, Wastewater Plant Director Terry Pinto responded to one concern raised by opponents about whether the city’s sewage treatment plant could handle the additional waste from a 26-room hotel. Pinto said that all new developments must separate stormwater runoff from sewage, thus the hotel would generate less flow to the plant than the former two-story pet store that had been at the Main Street site.